Tag Archives: Bolivia

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

This tiny building in the middle the small green lawn is the lodge! Altitude: 1397 metres.

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

I was lucky to see these incredibly beautiful and unique mountains on my way in and out of the reserve! In the rainy season you might not see anything but clouds here. There is no other way to get a view like this from inside the park – the sheer cliffs make all the peaks […]

Green-cheeked Parakeet (Pyrrhura molinae)

The green-cheeked parakeets were quite hard to see up close, as they were usually in the dense canopy when in the valleys. Not in dead trees, like the mitred parakeet seemed to prefer. Altitude: 1064 metres.

Refugio Los Volcanes Bromeliad

This species can grow to huge specimens with enormous inflorescences that dangles in the wind. The specialised root system ensures the plant is like glued to the face of the rock. Altitude: 1062 metres.

Mitred Parakeet (Aratinga mitrata)

This is perhaps the most numerous of the parakeet species here, and I saw many flocks of them escaping the various birds of prey. They nest in cracks and holes on the cliffs, and here it appeared at least 2 couples had their nest. A perfect spot it seemed, as they had this dead tree […]

Streaked Flycatcher (Myiodynastes maculatus)

If you know of a dead tree, or a tree with a dead branch nearby – just wait there for a while and you’re bound to find flycatchers or other birds with a need to have an unobstructed view. This is from the only lookout point in the park, so this flycatcher both had an […]

Refugio Los Volcanes Cactus

Finding cacti here was a surprise to me! I saw their red flowers  from afar, but assumed totally different species. Some were several metres long, like this one, and only limited by the abiliy to withstand the gravity and wind. Altitude: 1062 metres.

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

Due to the topography there is so far only this one spot from where you can truly enjoy the park! The other one is at the gate of the park, but that location is outside park. Here you only see the preserved park – all around you! I spent a few hours here, and it […]

Tropidurus melanopleurus

The female of the species, and as the male, it’s effortlessly roaming the sheer cliffs of Refugio Los Volcanes. Amazing how they seemed totally impervious to the strong wind – they effortlessly ran up, down or sideways while catching insects and checking out their competition. The walls were full of lizards, so apparently there is […]

Tropidurus melanopleurus

From afar the sheer cliffs seem to only house plants, but a closer look reveals an abundance of lizards! Amazing how they seemed totally impervious to the strong wind – they effortlessly ran up, down or sideways while catching insects and checking out their competition. The walls were full of lizards, so apparently there is […]

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

Bromeliads, cacti and a number of other species are living on these sheer cliffs! Defying gravity, wind, water and erosion! During my stay the wind was very strong, making it very difficult to hold my camara still, an the plants were rustling intensely in the wind. Yet they hold on through the heaviest of rains […]

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

The valleys are densely forested, but you’re always reminded of the unique environment this is. As seen here the walls are all around you – in some areas they are somewhat far apart, in others they are but narrow gorges. All mammals and humans must use the same routes to navigate their way through this […]

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

Here the sand is unable to accumulate due to the bedrock and thus the fast movement of the water. In the rainy season this will be an impassable, raging torrent. Altitude: 973 metres.

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

The only passable sections of the river is the rocky ones, or where the sand has dried up due to very low water levels as seen here. In many small streams elsewhere I found fish or crustaceans, but this river does not seem to have either at this elevation. Altitude: 1036 metres.

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

The incredible red cliffs are like nowhere on earth – beautiful and insurmountable! Over the aeons the mountains have slowly lost grains of red and deposited it on the valley floor and in particular around the rivers and streams. It looks like idyllic sandy beaches, but they are no place for a human! The sand […]

Long-tailed Potoo (Nyctibius aethereus)

This bird is so well camouflaged that even though you know what to look for you will easily miss it. As a visitor you’ll need help from the locals, as their daily routines interact with its way of life, and the observant locals will at one time or another see it. In this case it […]

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

It’s amazing how plants are able to survive on the vertical cliffs! Not only is there little nutrients, but the wind is sometimes really strong, and with the relentless rain of the wet season it’s a constant movement that will loosen any grip. Adding to this large chunks come off regularly, as seen here as […]

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

Perhaps the most beautiful of all features seen from the lodge! Here you can see holes in the wall – used for nesting by some of the species of parrots living here. What a view!! Over time this red will be dulled by algae, and then again a big chunk of the side will come […]

Scarlet Peacock (Anartia amathea)

The only butterfly species I encountered here, and only in the open fields of the lodge. Altitude: 1036 metres.

Masked Yellowthroat (Geothlypis aequinoctialis velata)

The song is very similar to the Willow Warbler, and I was enjoying it every day of my stay here. When looking for sound recordings I haven’t been able to find one that sounds like this one did, and it is perhaps yet another variation of this species. The recording below resembles European Pied Flycatcher […]

Plush-crested Jay (Cyanocorax chrysops)

A common but truly beautiful bird! I found this one very busy eating from this tree, and you can see it’s focusing on the Cecropia fruits rather than me. Altitude: 1036 metres.

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

The clouds are moving away as the early morning is progressing. The red cliff is there one minute and gone the next. It’s a landscape like nowhere else. Altitude: 1036 metres.

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

Early in the morning, and the clouds are really low – no sign of red cliffs. Altitude: 1036 metres.

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

Everywhere you’ll see chunks of mountain missing. It may look artistic or even beautiful, but when this chunk dropped off, everything in its path was destroyed! I saw countless boulders strewn around the valley floor and in the river. Altitude: 1036 metres.

Refugio Los Volcanes, Amboró National Park

When you first get a glimpse of the red sheer cliffs of the park, you know you are entering something truly spectacular. It’s like a fortress, and because of this natural barrier, even the humans have not established a mobile network here! If you come unannounced, you’d better bring some fireworks, as you cannot reach […]

Military Macaw (Ara militaris)

As I’m photographing a Plumbeous Kite I hear the calls of Military Macaws! I’ve just entered the fringes of Amboro National Park in which Refugio Los Volcanses resides, and I see this magnificent macaw – my very first sighting of the species. I am standing on a steep slope prohibiting me from moving closer to […]

Plumbeous Kite (Ictinia plumbea)

Getting to the Refugio Los Volcanes is a steep descent in dense forest-clad slopes. You hear birds constantly, but seeing them is difficult unless they are perched like this kite. Altitude: 1228 metres.

Gomphrena sp

I spent very little time on the Cerrado or grassland sections of the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, but on my way back to the village of Florida I stopped a few times to shoot some of the more conspicuous plants.

Gomphrena sp

I spent very little time on the Cerrado or grassland sections of the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, but on my way back to the village of Florida I stopped a few times to shoot some of the more conspicuous plants.

Linda’s Emperor (Doxocopa linda)

This is from the airstrip in Florida, and being next to Noel Kempff Mercado National Park there are so many different species of butterflies everywhere. The airstrip is no exception! The number of Adelphas was so large, that even back home I am unable to identify the few I managed to photograph! Thanks to Kim […]

Euphorbia sp

I spent very little time on the Cerrado or grassland sections of the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, but on my way back to the village of Florida I stopped a few times to shoot some of the more conspicuous plants.

Euphorbia sp

I spent very little time on the Cerrado or grassland sections of the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, but on my way back to the village of Florida I stopped a few times to shoot some of the more conspicuous plants.

Prestonia erecta

I spent very little time on the Cerrado or grassland sections of the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, but on my way back to the village of Florida I stopped a few times to shoot some of the more conspicuous plants.

Prestonia erecta

I spent very little time on the Cerrado or grassland sections of the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, but on my way back to the village of Florida I stopped a few times to shoot some of the more conspicuous plants.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 15

I spent very little time on the Cerrado or grassland sections of the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, but on my way back to the village of Florida I stopped a few times to shoot some of the more conspicuous plants.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 15

I spent very little time on the Cerrado or grassland sections of the Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, but on my way back to the village of Florida I stopped a few times to shoot some of the more conspicuous plants.

Headlight Beetle (Pyrophorus nyctophanus)

What an amazing sight! In the middle of the jungle in absolute darkness – a towering structure more than 2 metres tall – is dotted with countless tiny green lanterns!! This is the time of a very strange and deadly event – for the flying termites, that is. The towering structure is a huge termite […]

Wandering spider (Ctenid sp)

Deep inside Noel Kempff Mercado National Park there are few traces of human activities, and no other way to sleep than making a campground for the night. There are several campgrounds, but as this is the jungle and few visitors come here, they are quickly reclaimed by nature. This location is at the very end […]

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 14

I observed new (to me at least) and different species of plants wherever I looked, and even though I left the the plateau the very same trail walked up, I saw new and interesting plants all the time! With the enormous diversity of flora in this park, one would need years to see and photograph […]

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 14

I observed new (to me at least) and different species of plants wherever I looked, and even though I left the the plateau the very same trail walked up, I saw new and interesting plants all the time! With the enormous diversity of flora in this park, one would need years to see and photograph […]

Cliff Flycatcher (Hirundinea ferruginea)

A perfect spot for a flycatcher – a dead branch overlooking a wide area of land. It seemed at ease with humans approaching, and was busy chasing prey, grooming and stretching wings in various postures.

Red Tanager (Piranga flava rosacea)

The color of this bird is like a flash of red in a sea of green! This bird definitely wants to bee seen, and despite several species of bird of prey, the visibility does not seem to be a disadvantage in this landscape of scattered trees and open landscape. Altitude: 671 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 13

I observed new (to me at least) and different species of plants wherever I looked, and even though I left the the plateau the very same trail walked up, I saw new and interesting plants all the time! With the enormous diversity of flora in this park, one would need years to see and photograph […]

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 13

I observed new (to me at least) and different species of plants wherever I looked, and even though I left the the plateau the very same trail walked up, I saw new and interesting plants all the time! With the enormous diversity of flora in this park, one would need years to see and photograph […]

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 12

I observed new (to me at least) and different species of plants wherever I looked, and even though I left the the plateau the very same trail walked up, I saw new and interesting plants all the time! With the enormous diversity of flora in this park, one would need years to see and photograph […]

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 12

I observed new (to me at least) and different species of plants wherever I looked, and even though I left the the plateau the very same trail walked up, I saw new and interesting plants all the time! With the enormous diversity of flora in this park, one would need years to see and photograph […]

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 11

As I visited at the end of the dry season, the plateau was lush and green. Many of the plants species were in full bloom. Huanchaca Plateau is also called Caparu Meseta (Meseta de Caparú). Please help identify it – leave a comment. Altitude: 806 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 11

As I visited at the end of the dry season, the plateau was lush and green. Many of the plants species were in full bloom. Huanchaca Plateau is also called Caparu Meseta (Meseta de Caparú). Please help identify it – leave a comment. Altitude: 806 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 10

As I visited at the end of the dry season, the plateau was lush and green. Many of the plants species were in full bloom. Huanchaca Plateau is also called Caparu Meseta (Meseta de Caparú). Please help identify it – leave a comment. Altitude: 806 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 09

As I visited at the end of the dry season, the plateau was lush and green. Many of the plants species were in full bloom. Huanchaca Plateau is also called Caparu Meseta (Meseta de Caparú). Please help identify it – leave a comment. Altitude: 806 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 09

As I visited at the end of the dry season, the plateau was lush and green. Many of the plants species were in full bloom. Huanchaca Plateau is also called Caparu Meseta (Meseta de Caparú). Please help identify it – leave a comment. Altitude: 806 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 08

As I visited at the end of the dry season, the plateau was lush and green. Huanchaca Plateau is also called Caparu Meseta (Meseta de Caparú). Please help identify it – leave a comment. Altitude: 806 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 08

As I visited at the end of the dry season, the plateau was lush and green. Many of the plants species were in full bloom. The scent from this flower is simply amazing – sweet, deep and intoxicating! I wonder what the fruit looks like! Huanchaca Plateau is also called Caparu Meseta (Meseta de Caparú). […]

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, Huanchaca Plateau

I was hoping for a thunderstorm, as the dark and fast approaching clouds looked promising! Unfortunately for me, there was no thunderstorm – only strong wind and a brief shower. Typical of this time of year, before the wet season has really kicked in. It was as the rain was pouring down I startled what […]

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, Huanchaca Plateau

The plateau is of sufficient height to create its own weather, and during the later parts of the dry season the showers appeared like clockwork after noon. The wind picked up, and the sky darkened fast. I was hoping for a thunderstorm! Altitude: 835 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, Huanchaca Plateau

The temperature was very high, and I found it hard to cool down, as the plateau is open and without any cooling shadows. That was until I arrived at the edge of the plateau. Here the updrafts were very strong, and I was dried in seconds! Adding the incredible view I really enjoyed dangling my […]

Tropodurus chromatops

This species is a specialized climber, preferring the sheer cliffs of the Huanchaca Plateau and the strong winds there. The wind brings with it lots of insects, and that’s perhaps the reason it mostly prefers a vertical life? The only species I found here during my very short stay.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 07

As I visited at the end of the dry season, the plateau was lush and green. Many of the plants species were in full bloom. Huanchaca Plateau is also called Caparu Meseta (Meseta de Caparú). Please help identify it – leave a comment. Altitude: 839 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park plant 07

As I visited at the end of the dry season, the plateau was lush and green. Many of the plants species were in full bloom. Huanchaca Plateau is also called Caparu Meseta (Meseta de Caparú). Please help identify it – leave a comment. Altitude: 839 metres.

Noel Kempff Mercado National Park, Huanchaca Plateau

From afar the plateau looks flat, but it’s far from it. It’s dotted with strange formations like this one – shaped by rain, wind and sun. If this was in northern Europe I would assume the large rock was left behind by a glacier, but this is in fact a natural horizontal crack in the […]